Creative Child

What's The Rush? Milestones and Parenting

Part 1
by Brittany Ferrell on Mar 14th, 2016

Continued...

Instead of waiting just a moment or two to allow my daughter to settle back to sleep in between sleep cycles, I would immediately rush to her side to soothe her back to sleep myself. There is a happy place between “cry it out” and immediately responding to your child’s nighttime cries that I am still trying to navigate.

These strategies may work for you, although they have not worked for me...yet. However, if you have tried everything in the book and your little one still has not slept through the night at eight months or eight years old, do not despair. Tell yourself that it is okay and eventually sleep will happen. Then, tell your significant other that you are going to take a nap!

Rush #2: The Race to Go Mobile

My daughter started walking at thirteen months. I have a friend whose daughter did not start walking until eighteen months and another whose daughter pretty much came out of the womb strolling. This milestone is achieved at such widely different times and in such widely different ways. If your child is not walking yet, do not panic. Do not compare your child to their peers. If you are concerned, talk to your pediatrician and heed his/her advice, not that of the mommies from your playgroup.

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There is a difference between encouraging your child and pushing your child. I did not give my daughter a walker or make her hold my hands to “walk”, but every time she released her clutches on the furniture and bravely took a few steps in my direction, I clapped as if she had just won an Academy Award. I allowed her the time she needed to build both her muscle strength and her confidence. In that in-between time before your child starts walking, enjoy it. This is the time where your child is the perfect muse. They actually just lie there and allow you to take pictures of them!

Before I knew it, my daughter was not only walking, she was galloping and then sprinting through the house at full speed, leaving a path of destruction in her wake. Although I now love walking with my daughter hand-in-hand more than words can describe, I am grateful I did not rush her. That moment when your child opens their arms wide and takes those first few wobbly steps towards you is so sweet. Don’t rush it, savor it.

Here is what I have learned in my short time as a parent. Every child is like a snowflake; so unique that one cannot be compared to another.

I cannot even compare my daughter to what my husband or I were like at her age because she is so completely her own person. I especially cannot compare her to another child. I enjoy talking to my mommy friends and reading books about childhood milestones. I love looking back on what she has already mastered and I get excited to think about the big, wide world that is just out there waiting for her as she learns and grows.

However, the next time I receive the Spanish Inquisition on the playground, I am just going to smile politely and walk away. I am going to resist the pressure to keep up with the Jones’ or Kardashians or whomever it is these days. I am just going to enjoy my little snowflake.

Read the next article in this series here! What’s the Rush? Milestones and Parenting Part 2

Related Article: Positive Parenting Tips for New Moms

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Brittany Ferrell has a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology and a Master's Degree in Education. She has worked as an elementary school teacher for twelve years and was awarded "Teacher of the Year" 2011. In February 2014, Brittany and her wonderful husband, Jerome welcomed their miracle, Madeline Olivia to the world and she has chronicled her struggle to become a parent in her published memoir, "From Dream to Dream Come True: My Journey to Motherhood". Brittany writes about her fairy tale dream come true of motherhood on her blog, A Mama Tale.

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